COUN. Ian Sams became Surrey Heath's 31st Mayor at the council's annual meeting.

First elected to the council in 1979 to represent the Frimley ward, he has served continuously since that time. His service to the community was recognised when, in June 2002, as part of Surrey Heath's celebrations to mark The Queen's Golden Jubilee, he was awarded a Golden Jubilee Medal commissioned by the council, for "service across the borough and, in particular, for representing the people of Frimley for over 23 years".

Coun. Sams has served on a number of committees, including community, environment, leisure and policy, and is also a former chairman of the Recreation and Amenities Committee and Housing Sub-Committee.

He is married to Salma, who will support him as Mayoress in his mayoral duties. Ian and Salma were married in 1975 and set up home in Farnborough, before moving to Frimley in 1977.

In 2000 Ian and Salma celebrated their silver wedding anniversary by visiting Monet's garden with daughters Emily and Caroline, thus indulging Ian's three favourite hobbies of family, gardening and art. Salma is a business studies teacher.